Chattanooga Railroad Series: The Old Line Of The Cincinnati Southern

Thursday, January 09, 2014

A railroad linking Chattanooga with Cincinnati was assured when the Cincinnati City Council on June 4, 1869, adopted a resolution designating Chattanooga as the southern terminus of the Cincinnati Southern Railway. The city's chief competitor had been Knoxville. 

Later in the month, the city of Cincinnati approved $10 million in bonds to build the railway. Most of the money came from Cincinnati, but Chattanooga citizens did vote 923 to 64 in 1873 to subscribe $10,000 to the line. Near the end of the construction, Chattanooga citizens raised another $100,000 for the railroad project.

Excavation work started in 1873. Convicts were among those working on the line near Chattanooga. 

The last spike was driven into place on Dec. 11, 1879, in Robbins Tunnel in Scott County.

It was Feb. 21, 1880, when the first freight train arrived in Chattanooga from Cincinnati. The first passenger train completed the 336-mile trip on March 8, 1880. The governor of Ohio was among the dignitaries arriving in Chattanooga for festivities.

The Cincinnati Southern's Tennessee River Bridge in Chattanooga was condemned as unsafe in August 1919. For several months traffic had to be routed into town on Chattanooga Traction lines through Red Bank.

The line comes in from Dayton, Sale Creek and Soddy Daisy before arriving at the Tennessee River just below where the Chickamauga Dam was built. Some of the original stone piers still help support the lengthy railroad bridge below the dam. 

It crosses Amnicola Highway on a trestle near the present Chattanooga State Commuity College. It then goes near the old Kings Point community before a crossing of South Chickamauga Creek..

The track gets closer and closer to the old Western and Atlantic line coming in from around the north end of Missionary Ridge, Then they meet near Billy Goat Hill at the site of the old Boyce station in East Chattanooga. This was near Wilder and Roanoke streets.

The Cincinnati Southern then shared the W&A line on into downtown Chattanooga.   

The city of Cincinnati still owns the railroad, which is leased to the Cincinnati, New Orleans & Texas Pacific Railway. Though millions in additional bonds had to be issued for the construction of the line, it has proven to be a moneymaker for Cincinnati and still supports some of its capital projects.

There is an iron bridge at Wilder Street, but the handsome Boyce station is long gone.


Many Waldens Ridge Scenes Featured In Stokes Picture Book

A number of early views of Waldens Ridge are among the rarities found in the Stokes Photo Collection. There are many photos of the roads up the mountain showing streetcars, wagons and early autos. There are scenes at Rainbow Lake, Falling Water Falls, Signal Point and other scenic spots. Several photos are included of the Signal Mountain Hotel. The more than 700 photos ... (click for more)

2 Known Meth Distributors Arrested In Catoosa County

Two have been arrested in Catoosa County on drug charges.   Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office deputies conducted a traffic stop on Wednesday, at 7 p.m., on Highway 41 in Ringgold. During the stop, deputies seized two pounds of methamphetamine, which has an estimated street value of $30,000. Deputies arrested Jesus Humberto Lopez Deanda, 27, of Lilburn, Ga., and ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Has Lost Its Most Popular Citizen - Luther Masingill - And Response

Chattanooga has lost its most popular citizen – Luther Masingill. Although we are saddened we cherish the memories.  All of us have a Luther story.  Mine is the first time I met Luther.  This was before TV and all of Chattanooga listened to Luther on the radio.  I was 12-years-old.  Some of my buddies and I had gone to the State Theater in downtown ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Policeman’s Prayer

Every year, when the Law Enforcement Foundation of Greater Chattanooga holds its annual luncheon, it is one of the most heartening displays of what America really believes, down deep inside. The most prominent and influential leaders in the community – well over 1,000 -- gather to pay tribute and pledge their support to our heroes in blue who are unfaltering in their devotion, service ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Falls In State Volleyball Semis

SMYRNA, Tenn. – It’s a good thing that Signal Mountain volleyball coach Jennifer Redman is a young lady because her heart might not be able to stand the pressure if she wasn’t. Redman’s Lady Eagles were thisclose to being sent to the loser’s bracket in the opening round of the State Volleyball Tournament here at Stewarts Creek High School Wednesday afternoon. Had it been a ... (click for more)

Boyd-Buchanan Sweeps Loretto To Open Class A State Volleyball

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Playing what coach Alfie Dodd called a sub-par match, Boyd-Buchanan’s Lady Bucs were still good enough to sweep Loretto, 3-0, Wednesday morning in the opening match of the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association’s Class A state volleyball tournament at Blackman High School. Set scores were 25-19, 25-14, 25-20. “We advance and we know we can ... (click for more)